Northern revellers flocked to bars and pubs for one last booze-fuelled night out as the region braces for further coronavirus lockdown measures expected to be announced tomorrow.
Drunk partygoers were seen pounding the pavements outside nightlife spots in Manchester, Leeds and Newcastle before kick-out time at 10pm.
Meanwhile, bar staff were seen loading away chairs, tables and outdoor signs for what may well be the last time six months.
Vast swathes of the north could be placed in Tier Three lockdown, with pubs, gyms and casinos potentially among the businesses told to close for half a year – with monthly assessments.
The Prime Minister is expected to address Parliament tomorrow to reveal the new nationwide three-tier system of restrictions as cases continue to rise.
Booze-fuelled revellers flocked to Manchester’s bars and pubs for one last night out as the city braces for further coronavirus lockdowns expected to be announced tomorrow
In Newcastle Upon Tyne, three revellers were seen laughing as they made their way along the pavement
Drunk partygoers were seen pounding the pavements outside some of Manchester’s nightlife spots before kick-out time at 10pm
Revellers – some with protective face masks – were seen enjoying their night out in Leeds
In Newcastle, partygoers were seen enjoying drinks outside a pub as the region braces for further lockdown rules
Three Newcastle partygoers made the most of what could be the last night of pubs, bars and restaurants being open
A group of Newcastle revellers posed for a picture on their night out on Sunday
Meanwhile, bar staff were seen loading away chairs, tables and outdoor signs for what may well be the last time six months
Vast swathes of the north are set to be placed in Tier Three lockdown, with pubs, gyms and casinos among the businesses told to close for half a year – with monthly assessments. Pictured: Revellers in Manchester on Sunday night
The Prime Minister is expected to address Parliament tomorrow to reveal the new nationwide three-tier system of restrictions as cases continue to rise. Pictured: Revellers in Manchester on Sunday night
Some 65 more people have died after testing positive for Covid-19 – nearly double the 33 deaths recorded last week
A further 12,872 people have tested positive for coronavirus in the UK as the country’s daily case total stays above the 10,000 mark for an entire week
It comes in spite of Manchester’s case load appearing to decrease, with a 10 per cent week-on-week drop in the number of positive diagnoses.
While figures last week showed an infection rate of 582 per 100,000 people – this weeks dropped to 477, Manchester Evening News reports.
There were 2,933 cases in Manchester last week. This week saw 2,641 – a drop of 292.
Local leaders in Liverpool said they have been told that their city would be among those put under the new restrictions.
Liverpool mayor Joe Anderson, who earlier held a call with officials in London, tweeted on Sunday to say he had been told ‘no buts’ what would be imposed on his city, while insisting: ‘We have not agreed anything.’
Politicians from Manchester today launched a last-ditch appeal to ministers not to shut all pubs and restaurants in the city and instead hand them the power to only close those which are not meeting coronavirus safety restrictions.
Liverpool recorded the second-highest infection rate in England in the 14 days before October 4, with 4,593 confirmed cases (928.2 per 100,000 people).
The neighbouring borough of Knowsley had the worst rate, with 1,412 cases and an infection rate of 944.
Downing Street sources said no decision had yet been taken on where a Tier Three system would apply.
In Leeds, eager partygoers took to the streets in their droves to soak up the nightlife
Mask-clad partygoers were seen enjoying a night out in Leeds. It comes ahead of a potential government announcement tomorrow
Police were seen speaking to partygoers on a night out in Leeds. The city could be hit with a lockdown from tomorrow
It comes in spite of Manchester’s case load appearing to decrease, with a 10 per cent week-on-week drop in the number of positive diagnoses. Pictured: Two women on a night out in Manchester on Sunday
A staff member in The Corner Boy pub closing up and clearing away tables and chairs for the evening in Manchester
A staff member in The Corner Boy pub mopping the floor as he closes up for the evening
Three partygoers – one seated on the pavement – pose for pictures as they enjoy a night out in Manchester on Sunday
One woman ate a sandwich on the pavement while on a night out in Manchester on Sunday
Liverpool’s mayor Joe Anderson tweeted on Sunday: ‘We have not agreed anything, we have been told this is what Government intends to do with “no buts.” I and all the Leaders of the CA and @MetroMayorSteve have not accepted anything we have been trying to get financial support to protect our businesses and support our Region.’
Manchester is also understood to be in the Government’s three-tiered sights, with five of the city’s MPs today warning Mr Johnson of the ‘devastating impact’ of closing businesses.
Not only would ‘jobs, livelihoods and businesses,’ be put on the line, but more illegal gatherings would result, they said.
The letter was sent by Labour’s Lucy Powell, Jeff Smith, Mike Kane, Afzal Khan and Graham Stringer.
Two women out for the evening in Manchester ahead of the possible government announcement on Monday
Two women were seen laughing as they walked along the pavement in Manchester. Partygoers were enjoying a night out
Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham this morning blasted a lack of communication from the Government, telling Times Radio: ‘To be called to a meeting with 10 Downing Street on a Friday evening, to be effectively presented with proposals that needed to be agreed over the weekend, I mean that isn’t adequate or acceptable consultation to me.
‘That is being railroaded into a position. It’s all come too late.’
Mr Johnson’s plans were also savaged by the leader of Bolton Council, who warned they would destroy the economy of the north of England at a time when he was trying to ‘build back better’, including in former Red Wall Labour seats taken at the 2019 General Election.
And giving a brutal assessment of the plans on the BBC’s Andrew Marr programme this morning, David Greenhalgh said: ‘My immediate reaction is that it is oppressive.’
Mr Burnham, asked on Times Radio what he would say to Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick, said: ‘Isn’t it time for a major change here, a complete reversal of what we have seen so far?
Revellers leave The Strawberry Pub as the spread of coronavirus continues, in Newcastle Upon Tyne
Customers at The Restaurant Bar and Grill in Manchester enjoy a meal on Sunday night
People enjoy drinks at a bar in Manchester. From Monday, bars and restaurants could be told to close
Staff and customers at an Ask italian restaurant in Manchester enjoy a meal on Sunday night
Three women out for the evening in Manchester. One woman is seen sitting on the floor enjoying a sandwich
Customers at the Ban Di Bul a Korean restaurant in Manchester. From Monday, vast swathes of the north could be placed in Tier Three lockdown
A staff member wearing a protective face covering clears away a table for the evening in Manchester
Chairs are stacked and moved away by a worker ahead of a potential lockdown in Manchester
A staff member is seen carrying away a ‘staying Covid-19 secure’ sign on the pavement in Manchester
‘Localising the response to this crisis but critically, as Joe (Anderson, Liverpool mayor) said, putting in place a help package and an economic package to help the North of England through.
‘I would say to him this, are we levelling up here or are we levelling down? Which is it?
‘If you go ahead with this financial package, in my view, that will be to break what the Government said it would do when they were elected.
‘If they continue with this, jobs will be lost, businesses will collapse, the fragile economies of the North will be shattered.
‘The Government has a real choice here, if it proceeds on the path it is on, in my view, the central so-called mission of this Government to level-up will be over.’
Shadow foreign secretary Lisa Nandy told Marr: ‘It’s really hard to explain how angry people are in the north of England about what has happened, not just over the last few months but over the last few days. I haven’t felt anger like this towards the government since I was growing up here in the 1980s.
‘People feel that they haven’t just been abandoned by the government, they now feel that the government is actively working against us.’
Mr Jenrick insisted today that the Government is working closely with local leaders ahead of new coronavirus measures being brought in.
He told Sky News’ Sophy Ridge on Sunday: ‘We have spent the weekend working with those local leaders.
‘I have spent the whole weekend talking to leaders from Merseyside, from Greeter Manchester, from other parts of the country.
‘We are trying to work very closely with mayors, with council leaders, with chief executives to design these measures with them. That does take time.
‘We want to have good communication between national and local government before we announce how we are going to take this forwards.’
Mr Greenhalgh also took aim at the new Job Support Scheme (JSS) unveiled by Rishi Sunak on Friday, warning that anything less than support on the level of the original furlough programme would send firms ‘to the wall’.
People outside the Revolucion de Cuba bar in Manchester on Sunday. Many locals rushed to enjoy what may be their last bar trip in six months
Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick insisted today that the Government is working closely with local leaders ahead of new coronavirus measures being brought in
He added: ‘We cannot ”build back better” if we have lost some of these businesses.’
The Prime Minister is expected to introduce a three-tier system of lockdown measures in an attempt to make the existing patchwork of restrictions easier to understand.
Areas with relatively low infection levels will be placed in ‘tier one’, where only national restrictions such as the ‘rule of six’ and the 10pm curfew on pubs and restaurants will apply.
Tier two will also include bans on home visits and indoor socialising with other households. Options for tier three include total closure of the hospitality sector, a ban on overnight stays outside the home and the closure of venues such as cinemas.
Swathes of the North of England, including Manchester and Liverpool, could be placed immediately into the tier with the most severe restrictions, so pubs and restaurants would have to shut their doors.
Mr Greenhalgh added: ‘We have put our proposals in as Greater Manchester leaders … that we are against a lockdown as we understand it, at Tier 3, which is the complete lockdown of hospitality.
‘Our position is very clear that we feel we need to move to extra restrictions, but ones that protect those most vulnerable and susceptible to the virus but ones that don’t continue to have an adverse effect on our local businesses and economy.’
Real estate adviser Altus Group has said there are 7,171 pubs in areas with restrictions across the north of England at risk of temporary closure.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced on Friday workers in businesses which are forced to close under the new restrictions will have two-thirds of their wages paid by the Government under the JSS.
But it is less generous than the furlough scheme which comes to an end on October 31.
Asked about Mr Sunak’s JSS revamp, unveiled on Friday, Mr Greenhalgh added that anything less generous than the original furlough was ‘quite frankly unacceptable’.
‘Many of these businesses will sadly go under,’ he said.
‘We cannot build back better if we have lost some of these businesses. These great independent businesses that people put their life savings into will be lost.
‘The north feels like it is being treated differently. We know our (covid) rates are high, we are not underestimating that, but we have to find a way through this that … looks at the economy.
‘We cannot throw our local economy to the wall, to kill it in the north.’
Britain recorded another 12,872 coronavirus cases on Sunday, marking a nine per cent increase on last Sunday’s adjusted total which followed the Government’s extraordinary figures blunder.
The figures mark a 2,294-case drop from yesterday’s daily total of 15,166. Saturday’s death toll was 81 – 16 more deaths than the 65 recorded today.